Alterra Home Loans mortgage review
Home loan options for unconventional borrowers, including those without an SSN or tax returns, but it’s only available in select states.
- Choose this lender for nontraditional loan programs
- Choose another lender if you want a home equity loan or HELOC
- A good option for Spanish-speaking borrowers
Minimum credit score
Minimum down payment (Conventional)
Not available in: AK, AR, HI, ID, KY, ME, MA, MT, NH, NY, ND, RI, SD, VT, WV, WY
|Loan products offered||Conventional, Jumbo, FHA, VA, USDA, Refinance|
|Minimum credit score||Conventional: 620|
|Minimum down payment (Conventional)||3%|
|State availability||Not available in: AK, AR, HI, ID, KY, ME, MA, MT, NH, NY, ND, RI, SD, VT, WV, WY|
Kimberly Ellis is a personal finance writer at Finder, specializing in banking and financial literacy. After teaching in public and private schools, Kimberly zeroed in on personal financial education to help families and kids develop lifelong money skills. She hails from New York City, graduating summa cum laude from Queens College with a BA in elementary education and mathematics, as well as a New York State teaching certificate. She’s also an aspiring polyglot, always in a book and forever on the hunt for the perfect classic red lipstick.
Alterra Home Loans is a good option for both English- and Spanish-speaking borrowers who might not otherwise qualify for a conventional loan. Its specialized loan options offer more flexibility in eligibility and documentation than most traditional lenders. But Alterra mortgages are only available in select states.
And the company website, while well-designed and straightforward to navigate, is surprisingly slim on details and doesn’t provide any information about loan types, rates or fees. Instead, you’ll need to contact the company and speak with a loan officer about prequalifying or to get information about the loan programs available.
Alterra Home Loans is not currently available on Finder
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Alterra Home Loans requirements
To find out if you’re eligible for an Alterra Home Loans mortgage, visit the company’s website. Requirements vary depending on your credit history and financial situation as well as the loan type. Alterra recommends getting prequalified online and then speaking with a loan officer to discuss your options by video, email or in person.
Basic eligibility for a mortgage loan includes:
- Residency in select states
- Two years’ history of employment
- A FICO credit score of 620 or higher
- No history of bankruptcy in the past two years
Here’s a list of the documents you’ll need to apply for a home loan from Alterra Home Loans.
- Name and contact information
- Social Security number (not needed for ITIN loans)
- US government-issued ID, Matricula Consular ID or passport
- Proof of two years of employment in the same or similar line of work
- One year of tax returns
- List of assets, such as bank statements
- List of debts, such as credit card statements
Costs and fees
Alterra doesn’t provide any information about fees and costs on its website. However, you can expect to pay about 2% to 5% of your home’s total price in fees, including application, origination and third-party fees.
Costs may include:
- Application fee
- Appraisal fee
- Origination fee
- Credit report fee
- Closing fee
- Flood certification fee
- Title insurance
How to apply for a mortgage with Alterra Home Loans
To get started:
- Go to Alterra Home Loans’ website and select Apply Now from the top menu.
- Enter your zip code and select Continue to see the available branches in your area, if any. Depending on your location, you may not see options listed. Select Continue.
- Choose whether you’re Purchasing or Refinancing and select Continue.
- Select Single Family Residence or Multiple Family Residence when asked which type of property you’re buying.
- Answer “Are you a first-time homebuyer” with Yes or No.
- Enter the home purchase price and down payment.
- Provide your name, email and phone number and select Finish.
- Wait to be contacted by a loan officer about the next steps.
What types of mortgages can I get through Alterra Home Loans?
Other mortgage products offered by Alterra Home Loans
Alterra Home Loans also offers these specialized types of mortgages.
- Portfolio loans. This loan type is kept on the lender’s books and not sold on the secondary market. This allows lenders to set their own eligibility standards and offer loans with less stringent criteria.
- Non-warrantable condo loans. Loans for properties like timeshares and condotels are considered risky and don’t meet Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac guidelines. This loan type gets around that by requiring higher interest rates and a larger down payment than conventional loans.
- ITIN Loan Products. Individual Tax Identification Number (ITIN) home loans are for borrowers without a Social Security number but have a tax ID number. It requires a minimum 20% down payment, and you’ll pay a higher interest rate and closing costs than on a conventional loan.
- Mortgage refinancing. By replacing your existing loan with a new one with better terms, mortgage refinancing can help reduce your interest rate, lower your monthly payment and get rid of PMI when you’ve reached 20% equity.
How Alterra Home Loans’s mortgage products compare to other lenders
Compared to other lenders, Alterra Home Loans offers a standard range of home mortgages, plus some hard-to-find options, like ITIN loans and non-warrantable condo loans. The downside is that these specialized mortgages require a much bigger down payment and higher interest rates than conventional or government-backed programs such as FHA, VA or USDA loans.
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Alterra Home Loans reviews and complaints
As of August 2022, Alterra Home Loans has a 4.92 out of 5 rating on Zillow from 476 customers, who report being thrilled with the “above and beyond” service of their loan officers. Alterra Home Loans has been accredited with the Better Business Bureau (BBB) since 2018, has an A+ business rating and has closed four complaints over the past three years.
While there aren’t many reviews online, most customers had overwhelmingly positive things to say about the service from Alterra. But complaints on the BBB website mention loans not being processed in time, resulting in lost earnest money and, in some cases, serious financial distress.
Pros and cons of Alterra Home Loans
- Multilingual company. Alterra Home Loans is 100% Hispanic-owned and caters to both English- and Spanish-speaking borrowers.
- ITIN loan products. Few lenders offer ITIN home loans. With an ITIN loan, borrowers can get a mortgage without traditional credit, US legal status or a Social Security number.
- Accepts nontraditional income. Alterra considers other income sources such as self-employment for nonconventional loans.
- Pronto Plus mobile app. Allows you to apply for a home loan, send documents electronically and check your loan application in real-time.
- Limited locations. Alterra is only licensed to underwrite mortgages in select states and Washington, DC.
- Loans types, rates and fees not listed. While the website is clean and well-designed, you won’t find any information about loan programs, rates or fees. Instead, you are asked to contact the company to get started.
- No loans to tap into your equity. Alterra doesn’t offer home equity loans, reverse mortgages or HELOCs (home equity line of credit).
What is Alterra Home Loans?
Alterra Home Loans is a 100% Hispanic-owned mortgage company headquartered in Las Vegas, Nevada. It was founded in early 2007 and received equity investment from Panorama Point Partners in 2016. It is now owned by and operates as a mortgage brand under the Panorama Mortgage Group. The company also does business as Legacy Home Loans, Inspiro Financial and Panorama Mortgage Advisors.